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Fenton firefighters commemorate 9/11 anniversary with tribute to fallen first-responders

Published: Sep. 11, 2021 at 11:36 AM EDT
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FENTON, Mich. (WJRT) (9/11/2021)--Five bells rang over Fenton Saturday morning as part of a time honored tribute, paying respects to the 412 fallen brothers and sisters--first-responders who answered the call just after 9:00 on the morning of September 11, 2001.

On display feet away at the Fenton Fire Hall, a piece of the darkest day in American history: a girder pulled from the still smoldering ruins of the World Trade Center. The relic seemed to underscore the devastating power of an act that toppled the Twin Towers, ripped thousands of families from their loved ones and altered the trajectory of world history.

Two of the junior firefighters on staff here were born after the towers fell. They never knew the scenes of fear and chaos that unfolded live two decades earlier as the nation looked to New York in stunned silence.

As the notes of the National Anthem lilted overhead and a hush overcame the assembled crowds at the annual tribute in Fenton and as part of observations nationwide, the enormity of what was lost on that clear September morning seemed to again hit home.

A message now to the next generation. One built to ensure the salient sacrifice made for the many by the few never fades from memory.